Why The Dell Precision T5500
Not many other computer systems give you the performance at such a low price point as the Dell Precision T5500, admittedly a somewhat older piece of hardware but still plenty powerful even by today’s standards. The Dell T5500 is well suited for graphic design, home media server and gaming with minimal upgrades.
The T5500 is powered by the Intel W5600 series quad core line or can be configured with two W5600 6 core processors for a total of 12 cores with HT. It features 2 PCIe 2.0 graphics card slots and a 875W power supply, making the T5500 a powerful and versatile platform for someone looking for performance on a budget. At under $200 and adding a higher grade video card, like the R9 270, you can run the latest games at near, if not the highest 1080 graphics setting. Even with the AMD ATI R7 I am able to run Titan Falls, FarCry and Battle Field at the 2nd to highest graphics setting with very minimal page tare at 30 plus FS.
I also use a Precision T5500 as a dedicated media server that runs Plex. This application is CPU and memory heavy. My T5500 Plex server has a single quad cord W5620 with 15GB of PC3-1333 RAM (the motherboard has three memory channels so your RAM configuration should be in multiples of 3). When I first set this up I tested the server by stream 3 full 1080 HD (native) movies locally and 1 movie to my iPhone over the internet which required transcoding, so with 3 native movies and 1 movie being transcoded, I then launch Titan Falls on the second to highest graphics setting. I was very surprised, Titan Falls play pretty good and all four of the movies were prefect, no buffering or choppiness. Now, like I said, Titan Falls was not quite perfect, but it was only launched to put an extra load on the system for testing.
All said, while I know there are better systems out there, you can’t touch this kind of performance for under $200 anywhere else. The T5500 is 6 year old and at the time the top on the line commercial grade tech. This is why 6 years latter it comes very close to other current higher end systems. These were purchased in large numbers by companies and are now readily available off lease and refurbished.